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Consolidate, Clarify, Simplify All Pinochle Rules
#31
(04-20-2016, 11:41 PM)TigreLXIX Wrote:  
(04-20-2016, 10:10 PM)mickmackusa Wrote:  Why are you calling a variant with 1 Round = "No Auction"?
I would call 0 Rounds = "No Auction" and use a dash to signify an unlimited number of Auction rounds.

To me, "auction" denotes the possibility of more than one successive rounds of bidding.

If West deals and the bid goes around North - East - South - West, that is one round of bidding but there is no "auction" bidding (per the above definition).

I am only vaguely aware of variants that do not have bidding at all - and I think these are drastically different than anything we've discussed in regard to the Pinochle Notation that I don't think they warrant discussion.  (For example, I've read that the original game was between two players and they were initially only dealt a few cards at the beginning of the hand, and there was a "draw" pile.)  Are you aware of any other games in which there are no rounds of bidding (i.e., the Declarer and Contract value are arbitrarily defined)?

Ideally, unlimited auction would be represented by a dash in both the Notation and the Rules Generator, but I thought it would be more difficult to have a dash in a numeric field controlled by + / - buttons so that is why I suggested in the Rules Generator that 0 could denote unlimited auction.

Okay, then we differ on definition.  I'll stick with an Auction meaning a process where the highest bidder is awarded the Contract regardless of round limitation.
You are welcome to maintain your definition.

I have positively no knowledge of variants that exclude the Auction phase.
I would however like to watch a game like this play out.
I'm not going to disregard a variant just because I don't know or play a variant.
I feel it is my duty to be inclusive and to honor all variants.

Yes, it would be simpler to maintain a strictly numeric field for MaxRounds, but I don't always get to choose the easy road.
It's unbelievable how much you don't know about the game you've been playing all your life. -- Mickey Mantle
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#32
(04-21-2016, 11:40 PM)mickmackusa Wrote:  Okay, then we differ on definition.  I'll stick with an Auction meaning a process where the highest bidder is awarded the Contract regardless of round limitation.
You are welcome to maintain your definition.

I have no interest in being "right" or stubbornly maintaining my definition if it isn't logical or differs from the general consensus.  I am more than willing to change my view on things if given a compelling reason to do so.  I think your definition does make sense, and in fact Wikipedia says

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pinochle#Auction_pinochle Wrote:In auction pinochle, players bid for the points they predict their hand could earn. The highest bidder earns the right to declare the trump suit.

There is no mention of "rounds" in this definition; therefore, I believe I will align my definition with yours.

(04-21-2016, 11:40 PM)mickmackusa Wrote:  I have positively no knowledge of variants that exclude the Auction phase.
I would however like to watch a game like this play out.
I'm not going to disregard a variant just because I don't know or play a variant.
I feel it is my duty to be inclusive and to honor all variants.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pinochle#T...d_pinochle Wrote:The original version of pinochle involves a partial deal of twelve cards to both players in sets of four, leaving a stock of 24 cards. A player can score one meld after each trick won of the first 12 tricks. Melded cards can even be used to win tricks. After each trick, players draw one card from the stock into their hand starting with the trick-winning player. For the last 12 tricks, melds are taken into each player's hand and are no longer announced by the player who wins the trick. The traditional trick-taking rules apply only for these last 12 tricks.

There is a lot of other interesting discussion of the different variants and rules on the Wikipedia page.  You should check it out.  For example, I just learned that the "pre-1945 rules" establish that each player must play to win the trick if possible, but the "post-1945 rules" only require this when trump is led.  (I don't know what the significance of 1945 is, other than it was the end of World War II.  Maybe that has some relevance to the evolution of the game...)
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#33
(04-23-2016, 02:58 PM)TigreLXIX Wrote:  There is a lot of other interesting discussion of the different variants and rules on the Wikipedia page.  You should check it out.  For example, I just learned that the "pre-1945 rules" establish that each player must play to win the trick if possible, but the "post-1945 rules" only require this when trump is led.  (I don't know what the significance of 1945 is, other than it was the end of World War II.  Maybe that has some relevance to the evolution of the game...)

Yes, there is quite pile of information on variants there, and I've read it once or twice.
I am not sure if I agree with the 1945 dated rule, but then again I can't really argue its validity when I learned Pinochle in such an isolation player pool.

Sadly, I'm all out of fresh leads for information on lesser known variants.  I can read blog posts, books, and pdfs about certain variants, but when I am finished I always have questions to ask and loop holes to address.  I really need a confident veteran of these variants to serve as an ambassador to the variant.
It's unbelievable how much you don't know about the game you've been playing all your life. -- Mickey Mantle
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#34
Here is a core rule that I thought was pretty concrete before hearing otherwise:

Auctions start at the maximum number of Play phase points possible in a single hand.
In other words: Total Number of Aces, Tens, and Kings  + Points for Last Trick]

I always thought this made Pinochle very scalable and tidy.

However, Tigre, your family's variant starts at 21, right?  If so, do you know why this might be?
It's unbelievable how much you don't know about the game you've been playing all your life. -- Mickey Mantle
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#35
(04-25-2016, 09:19 PM)mickmackusa Wrote:  Here is a core rule that I thought was pretty concrete before hearing otherwise:

Auctions start at the maximum number of Play phase points possible in a single hand.
In other words: Total Number of Aces, Tens, and Kings  + Points for Last Trick]

I always thought this made Pinochle very scalable and tidy.

However, Tigre, your family's variant starts at 21, right?  If so, do you know why this might be?

Yes, you are correct - my family's version of single-deck starts off with a minimum bid of 21 (and is left to the Dealer at 20). When I read your post earlier where you said you started the auction at 25, I thought to myself, "Gee, that seems pretty high - there were plenty of times during my family's games where the Offense didn't even make 20!" So I'm guessing it had something to do with the Offense's success rate. (Then again, in your family's game duplicate sequences were worth more...right?)
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#36
(04-25-2016, 10:55 PM)TigreLXIX Wrote:  When I read your post earlier where you said you started the auction at 25, I thought to myself, "Gee, that seems pretty high - there were plenty of times during my family's games where the Offense didn't even make 20!"  So I'm guessing it had something to do with the Offense's success rate.  (Then again, in your family's game duplicate sequences were worth more...right?)

Yes, we gave inflated values to 2x of meld units.
Double Pinochle = 30 not 8.
It's unbelievable how much you don't know about the game you've been playing all your life. -- Mickey Mantle
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#37
Can we perhaps focus our attention on firming up a single modern set of rules for the consequences of going Set?
Let's itemize all of the potential Set conditions and discuss the most appropriate outcomes for both teams.


No marriage, no Play

Is there a necessary separation between Stuck-Dealer and Non-stuck Dealer when it comes to no marriage cases?
  1. I mean, if the Dealer has no marriage, then there is no qualifying trump to be declared; the hand, I feel, should be terminated, the Offense loses 50, and the Defense gets 0.  No unnecessary punishments for bad luck.  And hey, the Defense didn't want the bid anyhow!  Money for nothing & checks for free.
  2. However, if a voluntary bidder wins the Contract without a marriage - Oh my!  That is either: Intentionally Dirty, Unintentionally Foolish, Partner Negligence, or in the most extreme of extreme cases - damn unlucky that the team has meld to communicate and are without a marriage.
These voluntary bidder cases hold a higher criminality, but I don't think they deserve additional penalties.
Here is why...
Auction Rounds starting @ South: 
53 Pass 60 65
Pass - 70 75
- - 80 85
- - Pass
East wins the Contract at 85 and doesn't have a marriage -- this is the most "criminal / unsportsman" of the above voluntary categories.
I'm suggesting the outcome be:
North-South: 0 hand points
East-West: -85 hand points
Difference = 85 points

So you might be say, yeah, but what about all of North-South's meld points?
Let's say that North-South bid that Auction perfectly and could only reasonably accumulate 80 points for the hand as Offense.
If that 80 = 55 as meld and 25 as counters THEN East-West would have gained [unknown] meld plus 25 counters RESULTING 
North-South: 80 points
East-West: 25 (or more) points
Max Difference = 55 points

If that 80 = 45 as meld and 35 as counters THEN East-West would have gained 0 points RESULTING 
North-South: 80 points
East-West: 0 points
Difference = 80 points


My point is that, given the Defense bid to the best of their capability, the penalty IS maximized.
This makes the players, not the rules, accountable for delivering a "just" penalty for inappropriate bidding.

This point bodes equally for overly aggressive bidders who have a marriage.
If you have a Double-Run and someone decides to desperately outbid you, then you have the responsibility to inflate the Auction which punishes the over-bidder with a point loss that is equal to or higher than what you would have earned as Declarer. 

This is justice, no?



When there is Trump, there must be Play

Can we agree that a team always has A CHANCE to make their contract so long as the difference between Team Meld and Contact is 50 (Double-deck points) or less?
If so, then any stuck Dealer with a marriage will always have to play the hand out because even with 0 meld points, Offense has a chance.
In other words, there can never be a Board Set for a Stuck Dealer with a marriage.
As a result, this means that the Defense will have to earn their meld by saving.
This gives the Offense an incentive to do well (stop the Defense saving) despite knowing that they are going to go Set.
It is not just a waste of time for the doomed Offense.

This double-edged rule also prevents an Offensive team from Surrendering a hand if they suspect a blowout.
Forcing the Play phase, means that Saving is both a right and a privilege -- depending on where you are sitting.  



The above rules provide some memorable consistencies.
  1. Gotta have a marriage to declare trump and enter the Play phase.
  2. If you want your meld, you gotta save it.
It's unbelievable how much you don't know about the game you've been playing all your life. -- Mickey Mantle
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#38
We also played single deck pinochle where the minimum bid was less than the 25 possible points in the trick phase. Our minimum was mostly based on saving time. Since every hand we bid to at least 20 points we eventually declared that the starting point.

Growing up we never played the "must have a marriage in trump" rule, so I won't speak to that directly. There are times when I'll overbid my hand in an attempt to stretch the other team to a point where they might go set. This becomes a calculated gamble just like bluffing in poker where reading your opponent is critical. I don't know if this is "Intentionally Dirty" but it was a valuable tactic in my home.

We've always played that the team that wins the bid and goes set without getting to the trick phase loses the amount of points they bid and the other team keeps their meld. I've always felt this balanced out the bluffing strategy, and reigned in overly optimistic bidders. There is a tremendous magnifying power to declaring trump and passing cards. When the penalty for going set isn't high you're better off over bidding IMO because the bid allows you to control the hand/round and in turn maximizes their chance to win the game.

I'm generally in favor of letting a bid winner declare they can't make the bid. The penalty for going set is high enough that this little bit of damage control feels appropriate.
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#39
Because the game is played to a fixed scoring limit, losing N points is never as bad as allowing the opponents to gain N points.  Thus, no, it's not just.

Consider this case.  Score is 400-320, N/S leading.  East gets a double run.  North bids 190 to block East.  East/West have little or no meld outside the double run.  Score becomes 210-320...rather than East/West *winning*.  And note that the situation can occur at, say, 470-440...if I've got the 470, losing 70 to give my opps a 0, is better than letting them score 65.
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#40
(05-12-2016, 02:11 AM)bollingered Wrote:  We also played single deck pinochle where the minimum bid was less than the 25 possible points in the trick phase. Our minimum was mostly based on saving time. Since every hand we bid to at least 20 points we eventually declared that the starting point.

Growing up we never played the "must have a marriage in trump" rule, so I won't speak to that directly.

I respect that there may be good, logical reasons to adjust rules that do not scale well from Double-deck down to Single-deck.
By default, I would like to see Pinochle rules remain consistent (proportional to variant environment) so that players can easily switch from one variant to another.

Let's use this thread to broadly discuss which rules should/shouldn't be consistent and/or scaled down.
For an outcome with lasting appeal, please use statistics, probabilities, game impact, and/or logical sensibility.
Please refrain from citing historical or tribal references as support cases.
I don't need my way to win out, I need the right way to win out.
I look forward to your constructive thoughts.

Let me get things started by listing some scalable rules, then we can debate what needs to be adjusted and why...
  • Auction Starting Point
               DD: 50
               SD: 25
  • Bidding Increment Change Point (+1 --> +5 minimum bids)
               DD: 60
               SD: 35
  • Trump Marriage Requirement
               DD: Yes
               SD: Yes
  • Minimum Points to Meld
               DD: 20
               SD: 10
  • Minimum Points to Save
               DD: 20 (40% of Possible)
               SD: 10 (40% of Possible)

As I typed out the above rules, I feel like scalability is suitable for Partnership variants, but in a Cutthroat (Non-partnership) variant they are pretty unrealistic expectations.
I suppose I'd like to hear about marriage probabilities in Single-deck Partnership variants, if anyone wouldn't mind sharing.
What are the chances of being dealt a marriage while using a 48-card Pinochle deck in a game with 4 players (12-card hands) versus the chances in a Double-deck Partnership game.



(05-12-2016, 02:11 AM)bollingered Wrote:  There are times when I'll overbid my hand in an attempt to stretch the other team to a point where they might go set. This becomes a calculated gamble just like bluffing in poker where reading your opponent is critical. I don't know if this is "Intentionally Dirty" but it was a valuable tactic in my home.

We've always played that the team that wins the bid and goes set without getting to the trick phase loses the amount of points they bid and the other team keeps their meld. I've always felt this balanced out the bluffing strategy, and reigned in overly optimistic bidders. There is a tremendous magnifying power to declaring trump and passing cards. When the penalty for going set isn't high you're better off over bidding IMO because the bid allows you to control the hand/round and in turn maximizes their chance to win the game.

No, I like that tactic.  I suppose I am in the new-school camp.  By my preferred rules, it doesn't matter if the Auction is clean/dirty or intentional/unintentional.  If the non-declaring team bid to their maximum limit and the declaring team goes set for any reason, then the non-declaring team doesn't NEED to be gratuitously awarded their meld because they have just dealt a massive blow to the declaring team's score.  If the non-declaring team is also gifted their meld, then I feel aggressive bidding is over punished and this has an impact on the natural, competitive culture of auctions.

I am very happy to go on defending this point.  If anyone has any examples (even fringe ones) where they feel my preferred rule can be abused, please present it for discussion.
This rule both punishes bad bidding and rewards aggressive bidding.



(05-12-2016, 02:11 AM)bollingered Wrote:  I'm generally in favor of letting a bid winner declare they can't make the bid. The penalty for going set is high enough that this little bit of damage control feels appropriate.

I feel this gives too much benefit to the unsuccessful auction winner.  I wouldn't want overly aggressive bidding to be granted the power to voluntarily/instantly terminate the hand because that would set up Pinochle to be a much longer game with more negative point hands.  If a team truly wants to sabotage/block their opponents' score for the hand, they must EARN it by raking 31 or more counters.

I feel both of my above points promote balanced rules for aggressive yet skillful auctions.
If this is not true, let's figure out how to get the balance right.
It's unbelievable how much you don't know about the game you've been playing all your life. -- Mickey Mantle
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